Book Trailers #2

When I first wrote about book trailers back in November 2010, they were a growing trend in independent book promotion. Now they’re pretty standard as part of a marketing strategy, as many indies and traditionally published authors have them.

That is, except me.

Last week, my writer-friends in the Long Island Writers Group were urging me to do a book trailer for Baby Grand.

Truth be told, I’ve been hesitant. Here’s why:

  1. A professionally done book trailer costs $$$$. Over the last few years, I’ve seen tons of book trailers, many of them not very good or effective. And I really think a bad book trailer reflects poorly (just like a film trailer would) on its book, which might be incredibly good. So if I were to do a book trailer, I’d want it to be professionally done. That means it’s going to cost me some $$$$, which leads me to…
  2. Are they worth the investment? I know that lots of books have book trailers, but I’m still not sure how effective they are in actually the selling the book. I can’t think of anyone who says, I’m thinking of reading Book ABC. Let me look for the book trailer first (and they have to find it!) and see what I think. Most people just hop on over to the book’s Amazon page and take a look at the book cover, synopsis and reviews. At least that’s what I do. I rarely look at a book trailer, even if there’s one right there on the Amazon book page or author page.

However, I do have to say that there have been book trailers I’ve stumbled upon that I found to be quite effective — meaning they made me not only want to read the book, but go and buy the book.

Here’s two of them:

Notice that the style of each of these book trailers reflects the kinds of books they represent — the one for The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is emotional and tugs at your heart strings, while the one for 15 Seconds is fast-paced and edgy. I think it’s also effective that they both feature the authors themselves — it’s nice for readers to be able to put a face to a book.

Who knows… If I can find the right idea and the right company for the right price, maybe I’ll put together a book trailer for Baby Grand. But for now my marketing dollars (what there are of them) are going elsewhere.

Authors, have you created book trailers for your books? How effective have they been for you?

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3 thoughts on “Book Trailers #2

  1. I have gotten so much positive feedback on my book trailer. I take my laptop to book signings and play it for people that ask what the book is about. I think it does help sell a book. They are great for witter and Facebook. I did not want mine to be photos and subtitles. I wanted a little movie. I kept looking in the Chamber of Commerce directory for new production companies. I finally got lucky and found one. I know another author that held a contest and advertised at local colleges. She had a tough time picking the winner and gave the winner a cash prize, about 1/4 of what it would cost. I feel my trailer lets me market in niche areas to people who didn’t know they wanted to buy a book. Your cover is so amazing, I think it would look great on a trailer.

    • @doreenb8 — that’s really an interesting idea…playing them at readings/signings. I could see how a trailer would be effective in that case.

      @Dina — I tend to agree with you…five years ago, they were cool and memorable because not everyone was doing them. Now, it’s almost as if they’re too commonplace. And you’re right…good ones cost $$$. I did trailers for my novels and shorts using Animoto. They were fun to make (and cheap, too), and I know some have sold a few books. But I’m not sure if I’ll do a trailer for my next release. I think I’d be better served putting the money towards some big promotions in places like Author Buzz and Kindle Nation, which DOES sell books (at least, in my experience). (I may change my mind on this…I’m at least six months away from the next release.)

  2. Reblogged this on Making 'Baby Grand,' the Novel and commented:

    Last night, I was discussing book trailers with the students in the continuing education class I teach at Hofstra University titled, “Take Control of Your Writing Career: Self Publish.” I was going to blog about that topic today, but when I checked to see what I’ve posted about book trailers before, I found the following post, which I’ve reposted. My feelings about them are still the same. What do you think of book trailers? Do you have one for your book?

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